Monday, December 27, 2010

Installing Family Tree Builder 5.0

Back in November, MyHeritage announced the release of a brand new version of Family Tree Builder 5.0. I had downloaded the previous version some time ago and after using it a few times had begun to use Legacy as my main genealogy software. The release of the new version got me excited aboout the software again so I decided to upgrade to version 5.0

Here's how I downloaded Family Tree Builder the first time:

  • Click on the download link
  • Choose custom install
  • Wait a few minutes..
  • Product registration:
First name, last name, gender, email address, password
  • Click next
But it wouldn't let me register since the email address I provided was already being used. Did I have an account with MyHeritage already? I couldn't remember so I checked my email inbox but alas no, I wasn't a member. This meant someone else had already used the same email address as me so instead I used my Yahoo email which was annoying cos I didn't really check emails from that account. How inconvenient!

This stuff was optional:

Birth year, address, city, country, post code, telephone

  • Then click finish

Then it asked me if I wanted to upgrade to a premium account I clicked 'no' and then it asked to enable automatic publishing for online backup, I clicked, 'yes.'

So anyone else felt the urge to upgrade or to try out MyHeritage software?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Mohammed Ali Jinnah's 134th Birthday

134 years ago today,
Qaid e Azam -
Mohammed Ali Jinnah
was born in Wazir Mansion, Karachi district, of lower Sindh.



As we celebrate the birth of Jinnah,
I would like to wish all Christians in Pakistan and around the world, a very merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 14

I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

Thursday November 25th 2010

'Two personnel of Frontier Corps were killed and three others received injuries when their vehicle was targeted with a remote controlled bomb in Bara area of Khyber Agency on Thursday. ' (Dawn)

'A paramilitary soldier was killed and six others were injured when a bomb exploded in Sarmalo Kando area of Orakzai on Thursday. Hangu DCO Adeel Sadiq narrowly escaped the attack.

Official sources said that militants detonated the bomb with remote control when a convoy of 11 vehicles escorting the DCO was in the area.

The deceased was identified as Lance Naik Rahman Wali. One vehicle was destroyed in the attack.' (Dawn)



Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Friday, December 10, 2010

How to Organize Your Files

Here is a website I found that shows you how to organize the bits and pieces of paper that you have regarding your ancestors. Fileyourpapers.com gives you a guide on how to organize your information so you can easily find what you're looking for without rummaging through piles of paper. It has a system for Ancestral Quest, Legacy Family Tree, MyTrees Online (haven't heard of that one) and Personal Ancestral File software. I would suggest looking through these guides just to see what kind of ideas there are to try, maybe something will appear interesting. I found the explanation MRINs AND RINs really interesting as I didn't know what they were before.

If you're like me and you don't have much papers to sort and pile (lucky or unlucky - you decide), then I wouldn't bother with this. I've not reached the stage where I have many same names where I get confused about who I'm looking for. Additionally, most of my work is on my computer which means I can search and find material quicker.

Things you'll need for this task:
* A genealogy software
* Binders/Folders
* Tabs
* Documents (sources etc)
* Time

Good luck to those trying to organize their work. Some day your children, grandchildren will appreciate your tidiness!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Data Backup Day - Mobiles

The 1st of every month has been nominated as Data Backup Day at Geneabloggers and rightly so. As genealogists we all need to take care of all that data we collect whether it's in genealogy databases, documents, scans or whatever because you never know when some incident puts your research back to square one.

Recently I mentioned I took a trip to Pakistan where I managed to make some progress with finding out more about my relatives. Well, I had been taking notes of details such as dates and names using a pen and paper but soon found I didn't have time to scribble it all down so I resorted to making short notes on my mobile which had a handy tool for doing exactly that. This was all going well until my mobile decided to succumb to overheating (I think!) and fall dead. I thought OK, maybe it's not so bad, maybe all I need is a new battery to get it working again. So I returned to the UK with the hope that my mobile would be fine with a new battery. Cut to a few weeks later, and I find out that even with a battery that works fine in a similar mobile, my mobile is definitely dead. Yes, I had lost the data on my phone along with non-genealogy stuff.

What I learnt:

* Technology, as amazing as it is, can fail.
* Using a pen and paper isn't so bad afterall.
* I need a new mobile (anyone want to gift me one?)

So all you genealogists out there, remember to back up your data wherever it is!

Note to self: Back up your genealogy database as you haven't done so since ages.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - N. Bi (?-?)


I obtained this photograph of my greatgrandmother's tombstone from my brother who took photos of some of our ancestors graves while he was in Pakistan (yes, he went too).

N. Bi is buried in our private family graveyard in Punjab. The writing on the stone isn't clearly visible but I can make out the Urdu script to read her name. Other information seems to have faded away such as when did she pass away. I haven't found out much information about her and missed out on seeing the grave for myself, which just goes to show if you have the chance to visit an ancestors grave, you should do it.

N. Bi was the mother of my grandfather, M Y.

Here is what it says:

"[First name] Bi
???
Wafaat ???" (Translation: Death)

Some day I hope to see it in real life..

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 13

I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

However, since I've been away I may have missed some reports.

Thursday November 11th 2010

'Twelve persons, including nine militants and two security men, were killed in exchange of fire in Orakzai and Mohmand tribal regions on Thursday, sources said.

They said that six militants and a soldier were killed in a gunfight in Goak area of Orakzai Agency. According to officials militants attacked a convoy of security forces and killed a soldier.

In Mohmand Agency, three militants, a civilian and a khasadar were killed while three soldiers received injuries during a search operation.' (Dawn)


Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Eid ul Adha 1431

Eid ul Adha (Arabic: عيد الأضحى ‘Īd al-’Aḍḥā) is a religious festival celebrated by Muslims and Druze worldwide as a commemoration of Ibrahim's (Abraham's) willingness to sacrifice his son Ismael for Allah. It is one of two Eid festivals that Muslims celebrate. Like Eid ul-Fitr, Eid ul-Adha begins with a short prayer followed by a sermon (khuṭba). It is also called the bigger Eid because it lasts a day longer than Eid ul-Fitr.

Eid al-Adha is four days long and starts on the 10th day of the month of Dhul Hijja (ذو الحجة) of the lunar Islamic calendar. This is the day after the pilgrims in Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia by Muslims worldwide, descend from Mount Arafat. It happens to be approximately 70 days after the end of the month of Ramadan.

Happy Eid everyone.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Pakistan Trip

As promised, here are the pictures from my trip to Pakistan:


Sitting in the plane watching the clouds..


..land from above..


Finally..after 7.5 hours, the information on-board the plane states we're now flying over Pakistan


Islamabad from above

The morning sun in my ancestral village

The road into my village




Fields


Family graveyard

I also have some photographs of some tombstones in our family graveyard which I will be hopefully uploading soon.

Please do leave a comment about any of the pics :)



Thursday, November 11, 2010

Armistice Day

Today we remember those who lost their lives in World War I and II. I'm relisting the names of soldiers that were mentioned in a BBC programme last year called Muslim Tommies:

Amir Khan - 129th Baluchis, France 1915
Subedar Muhammed Agia - 57th Rifles, May 1915
Havildar Abdul Rahman - 59th Rifles, France 1915
Juma Khan - 40th Pathans, France 1915
Sepoy Abdul Ghani - 125th Napier's Rifles, France 1915
Naubet Khan - 107th Pioneers, France 1915
Mohamed Ali Bey - 20th Deccan Horses, France 1915
Abdul Jabar Khan, Sep 1917
Mahomed Mazafar Khan - 19th Lancers, France, Oct 1917
Jemadar Shamsher Ali Khan - 34th Poona Horse, France, April 1917
Dafadar Fazi Khan - 19th Lancers, France Oct 1916
Havildar Ghufran Khan - 129th Baluchis, Aug 1915
Abdul Ali Khan - 6th Cavalry, France Aug 1917
Rajwali Khan - Brighton, Sep 1915 (at hospital)
Raja Khan - 38th CIH, France Oct 1917
Jemadar Hasan Shah - Hodson's Horse, France 1916
Kesu Shah - Rouen, May 1916
Rahimdad Khan - 19th Lancers, France, May 1916
Fateh Ullah - June 1916

Someone, somewhere will have known these men...

I'm back!

Apologies for my being absent for so long but I've been to the Land of the Pure: Pakistan. My visit lasted 5 weeks which was spent with relatives, reimmersing myself into Pakistani culture and food. As usual the constant stream of guests to my home consisted of many close and distant relatives that I had not seen for years. Some guests were unknown to me so I was repeatedly asking 'who is that? and how are they related to me?' I had to stop myself from asking them 20 questions about themselves.

The weather was a happy change from miserable British weather even though it took some getting used to. I managed to stay alive in the first week by constantly using a fan and drinking lots of water. And yes, there were some ill effects of eating food from vendors which I would like to forget about (think sleepless nights and constant throwing up).

If you're wondering how much genealogy work I managed to do, then I can tell you it's probably 10% of what I had hoped. Most of my time was spent making family history rather than recording it. I do regret that I could have done more but I don't regret the happy moments that I made with my family.

I'll be posting pics in the following days so please do, pop back to take a look :)

Monday, November 8, 2010

One year on .. (6)


An unnamed soldier
was killed during clashes in various areas of the Bajaur Agency
on 8th November 2009

Four unnamed soldiers
embraced shahadat in Makeen
on 9th November 2009

Two unnamed soldiers
were killed in attacks at Chamarkand area in Safi Tehsil
on 9th Novmber 2009

Two unnamed soldiers
were killed in clashes at Manzari Khando
on 10th November 2009

Eight unnamed soldiers
were killed in an explosion Dwa Jungi
on 11th November 2009

Fifteen unnamed soldiers
were killed in fighting in Sararogha area further east
on 12th November 2009

Two unnamed soldiers
were killed in a roadside bomb in Sararogha area further east
on 12th November 2009

Burials: Unknown

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

One year on .. (5)


Two unnamed soldiers
embraced shahadat in the clashes at Makeen
on 19th October 2009

An unnamed soldier
embraced shahadat in an operation north of Shakai
on 19th October 2009

Two unnamed soldiers
lost their life south of Razmak
on 19th October 2009

An unnamed soldier
was killed in Boay Naray, west of Sherwangai
on 21st October 2009

An unnamed soldier
was killed in the Razmak Army Camp
on 21st October 2009

Brigadier Moeen Ud Din Ahmed
embraced shahadat
on 22nd October 2009

Three unnamed soldiers
were killed in Kotkai in South Waziristan
on 23rd October 2009

Seven unnamed soldiers
were killed in Kotkai in South Waziristan
on 20th October 2009

Seven unnamed soldiers
were killed in Sur Khar, in the northwester Khyber region on the Afghan border
on 31st October 2009

Burials: Unknown

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Which ancestor would you like to meet and why?

Having researched and learnt about your ancestors, it's understandable that you'll feel more attached to them than previously but which ancestors would you have loved to have met?

Personally, I would like to meet my great grandmother, N. Bi who was rumoured to have lived til the age of 100! I would ask her about her life and about where she lived. I don't know her parent's names or any of her siblings (if she had any). I don't know the names of some of her children. There's lots of information that I don't know about her and would love to ask.

Now it's your turn. Which ancestor would you like to meet and why?

Friday, September 10, 2010

Eid Mubarak


Ramadhan has ended and now its time for Eid. Hope everyone has a happy Eid with their family and loved ones.


Eid ul Fitr - 10th September 2010

Friday, August 20, 2010

Genoom genealogy


Genoom is a genealogy network based on the Facebook model that allows you to create a family tree and a private network. It allows you to invite family members to add to your growing tree with information such as names, dates, stories etc. Other features include the ability to use discussion forums, calendars, private messaging etc to keep in contact with family members.

I like the clear, crisp interface of this website and would recommend it to anyone who wants to make their family history work accessible to others in their family.

Go check it out if you haven't seen it and tell me what you think. Do you think anything needs changing?

Link: http://www.genoom.com/

Thursday, August 19, 2010

One year on .. (4)


Suleman, a soldier from the Bajaur Levies
was shot dead in the Shago area of Bajaur
on 19th August 2009

Three soldiers
were killed in a suicide bomb attack in the Kanju in Swat
on 22nd August 2009

Two soldiers
were killed by a roadside bomb in South Waziristan near the Afghan border
on 7th September 2009

Two FC soldiers
were killed in a rocket attack on the Jandola fort in Frontier Region (FR) Tank
on 10th September 2009

Subedar Siddiq of the Mehsud Scouts (Frontier Corps)
was killed in Karawal area of Malak Dinkhel, Khyber Agency
on 14th September 2009

Burials: unknown

Saturday, August 14, 2010

63..

It's the day of Independence for Pakistan that we remember on 14th August every year but this year we will be remembering all those that have lost their lives in terrorist attacks, the plane crash, and those who perished in the floods.

Yes, we are grateful that Pakistan was made on this day. But let's also be grateful that we live, we breathe and are able to live comfortably.

Remember those who have no homes to feel safe in. Those who won't be fasting but will be feeling the hunger. Those who will be fighting for their lives.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Ramadhan Mubarak

I'd like to wish all My Pakistani Ancestry blog readers, Ramadhan Mubarak

For us, the Holy month started on Thursday 12 August 2010.

Ameen

Saturday, July 31, 2010

RIP


For all those killed in the airplane crash near Islamabad and for those who died in the recent floods in Pakistan:

'We belong to Allah and to Him do we return'

152
dead : Airblue plane crash

417+ dead : Floods in Pakistan

I urge you to pray for all those who have lost their life and to donate money to those people affected by the floods. You can donate to Muslim Aid, here.


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Graves in Karachi

Readers of this blog might remember that I posted about the condition of graveyards in Pakistan. I managed to find a list of cemeteries in Karachi (which I obtained from Wiki):

Muslims
Jannatul Baqi Graveyard at Hub River Road, S.I.T.E.

* Azeempura Cemetery, Shah Faisal Colony
* Bagh-e-Ahmed (AMI's Karachi Chapter Cemetery)
* Essa Nagri Graveyard, Main Sir Shah Suleman Road (officially declared closed)
* Gizri Cemetery, D.H.A.
* Mewashah Cemetery (officially declared closed)
* Jannatul Baqi Cemetery, Hub River Road, S.I.T.E.
* Leemo Goth Graveyard, Haji Leemo Goth, Gulshan-e-Iqbal
* Metrovill III Graveyard, Metrovill III, Gulshan-e-Iqbal
* Mian Goth Cemetery, Malir
* Model Colony Cemetery (New), Malir
* Model Colony Cemetery (Old), Malir
* New Karachi Cemetery, New Karachi
* Old Morraro Cemetery, S.I.T.E.
* P.E.C.H.S. Cemetery, Tariq Road (officially declared closed)
* Paposh Nagar Cemetery (officially declared closed)
* Sakhi Hassan Cemetery, North Nazimabad (officially declared closed)
* Peer Bukhari Graveyard, Mannoo Goth, Gulshan-e-Iqbal
* Pehalwan Goth Graveyard, Pehalwan Goth, Gulistan-e-Johar
* Saudabad Cemetery, Malir (officially declared closed)
* Shah Faisal Cemetery(Colony Gate), Shahrah-e-Faisal (officially declared closed)
* Shanti Nagar Graveyard, Dalmia Road, Shanti Nagar
* Wadi-e-Hussain Cemetery, Super Highway (Wadi-e-Hussain.com)

Christian

* Gora Kabristan, Shahrah-e-Faisal.

Jewish

* Bani Israel Graveyard

Zoroastrian (Parsi)

* Parsi Dar-e-Meher (Fire Temple), Dr Umar Bin Muhammad Daudpota Road.


In Urdu, a grave is called a qabar and a graveyard/cemetery is called a qabarstan.

Which cemeteries have you visited? How did you find them? Did you think the cemetery was being well looked after? How important is it for the future generations that gravestones are preserved? Leave a comment below or email me at pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk

Sunday, July 18, 2010

'Who do you think you are?' Its back!


Having been deprived of this particular documentary for a year, I thought perhaps the makers of the program had forgotten to broadcast another season of 'Who do you think you are?'. Last year, I posted about season 7 where Davina McCall and Boris Johnson participated. So I was pleased to see that the show will reappear on our screens on July 19th, ready to enthrall us with insights into celebrity ancestries.

According to Wiki-meister (lol), season 8 will bring us tales about Bruce Forsyth, Rupert Everett (Prince Charming from Shrek :p), Monty Don, Jason Donovan, Hugh Quarshie, Rupert Penry-Jones, Dirvla Kirwan, Alan Cumming and Alexander Armstrong.

As always it's on BBC One at 9pm, so don't miss it! I certainly won't be especially with BBC iPlayer.

Remembering our shaheed .. 12

I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

Wednesday June 23rd 2010

'Wednesday's clashes, which also killed a paramilitary soldier and wounded nine, happened in the militant stronghold of Djabori that was captured by the security forces last month.

Over 600 militants and about two dozen security personnel have been killed in fighting over the past month in Orakzai, one of the major bases of the Pakistani Taliban, who are fighting both the Pakistani state and coalition forces in Afghanistan.' (Dawn)

Monday July 5th 2010

'Four militants in vehicles packed with explosives and rockets stormed a heavily-guarded fort in Lower Dir early on Monday morning, killing one soldier and injuring 12 others.

Twelve soldiers and an officer were wounded. One soldier, identified as Hazrat Nabi, died in hospital. ' (Dawn)


Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

One year on .. (3)


An unnamed soldier
lost his life in Jandola in the Bannu district, Swat
on 18th July 2009

Six unnamed soldiers
died in Northwest Pakistan
21st July 2009

An unnamed soldier
was killed in a mortar attack in North Waziristan
on 22nd July 2009

Burials: unknown


Saturday, July 17, 2010

What I do, Tech-wise


I have been unavailable for the past couple of weeks and haven't been able to post. But here is my contribution to Thomas MacEntee's What I do meme:


* Hardware
: Sony Vaio NW11S/S 15.5in Laptop

* External storage: USB drive

* Online storage: Google Documents

* Backup: Papers, Google Documents, USB drive

* Firewall: Dont know

* Virus protection: AVG

* Spyware: AVG

* File cleaner: None

* Printer: A faulty Epson that need's fixing or dumping :(

* Scanner: None but would love to buy one! Suggestions of any good ones?

* Phone: Landline, Sony Ericsson 580i

* Mobile media: Huh?

* Music player: Ipod

* Car audio: Don't have a car!

* eBook Reader: None

* Browser: Mozilla Firefox

* Blog: Blogger

* RSS: Google reader

* FTP: Huh?

* Text editor: Microsoft Office 2007, Notepad

* Graphics: Nothing fancy, just Paint and Microsoft Office Picture Manager

* Screen capture: Snipping Tool

* Social media: Facebook, Twitter

* Social bookmarking: None

* Social profile: None

* URL shortener: bit.ly

* Office suite: Microsoft Office 2007

* E-mail: Windows Live, Yahoo

* Calendar: Google Calendar

* Accounting: Excel

* PDF generator: Adobe Acrobat

* Genealogy database: Legacy 7, Family Tree Builder

* Genealogy tools: None that I can think of

* Other tech stuff: Sony Cybershot camera

I feel I need to spend more time on 'geeking up' and learning how to use technological tools to help my research.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

How to create a family group sheet

Last year I downloaded the free Legacy 7, and transferred my family tree file from PAF to the new software. Today, I thought I'd give a little guide on how to create a family group sheet.

Open your family tree file on Legacy:



Click on 'Reports' button on top and a window will appear, click on the 'Family' tab:



Type the full name of the chosen persons family sheet in the title box:



Click on the 'Report Options' icon and choose various information to be included and the format (whatever you prefer). I chose to include the RINs and MRINs.* You could also take out the christening date and place, which I realised afterwards!




You can then preview and print. Voila!

My preview looked like this:



*What are RINs and MRINs?

Each person in your database has a number called a Record Identification Number (RIN) and each family has a number called Marriage Record Identification Number (MRIN).

Can readers of this blog provide a guide to creating a family goup sheet with other software?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 11


I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

Friday May 21st 2010

'Two soldiers were killed and three others injured in a landmine explosion in the Safi tehsil of the Mohmand Agency on Friday, officials said.

Security forces were conducting a search operation in Garhi, Kandharo and Ferman Kore areas when the landmine planted near the main road exploded.

Lance Naik Nooruddin and Naik Rehman Shah died were killed in the incident occurred in the Garhi area.' (Dawn)

Saturday May 29th 2010

'Jahanzeb Khan, a local administrator, says the attacks Sunday targeted militants in the Orakzai tribal region who had fled from an army offensive last year in nearby South Waziristan.

Khan says two soldiers were killed in Orakzai on Saturday night when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb.' (Dawn)


Wednesday June 9th 2010

'Dozens of militants attacked a security convoy in an area near Afghanistan where Pakistan declared the Taliban defeated, sparking a battle that killed six soldiers and 40 militants, an official said Wednesday.' (Dawn)

Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Monday, June 14, 2010

How to use message boards

Let me introduce you to a genealogy research tool: message boards

The one I'll be talking about today is: http://genforum.genealogy.com/



The main page shows different message boards divided into surnames, regional and general topics. For instance, if I choose a surname to search for example, 'DIN', I am unable to find a message board. However, you can 'request' a forum for that surname by clicking on 'Add a Forum' at the bottom of the page:



If I want to search for a forum by country, e.g. Pakistan, I can click on 'Countries' which brings me to a page listed with various countries. I search for and click on 'Pakistan' where I can view previous posts that have been published on the forum.



How to write a post of your own ..


The first thing you have to note when writing a post on a forum is the title. Example of a bland and boring title would be 'Information required'. Most likely, people viewing the board will immediately glance away from this post as it doesn't seem that interesting (unless they are the types who have to view every post). Instead you should try to pack in information such as names, dates and regions. A good example of this is: 'Looking for Imam Bukhsh from Dargan village, Pakistan 1910'

Usually I have come across messages that offer no information but simply demand it. It's not good enough just to say you are searching for your family tree since most likely your family tree is not lurking on the Internet, waiting for you to find it. Your posts have to be clear and concise so don't waffle otherwise readers will be put off.
Also try looking for answers locally by asking family members, historians in the region you are researching and searching for books at your local library.
People with similar research interests will most often share their information with you so saying 'thankyou' and 'please' are some pleasantries that should not be forgotten.

Lastly, don't be despondent if you don't have the amount of feedback that you had hoped for. As genealogy becomes more popular within the Pakistani community, more people will look to the Internet as a means to do their research.

Please do give your comments below or even email me your thoughts at pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk - I'd love to hear from you.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

One year on .. (2)


Sepoy Shahid Khan, Raza Mohammad, Naveed Khan and Sharifuddin
embraced shahadat (martydom) in South Waziristan Agency (SWA)
on 5th June 2009

An unnamed soldier
lost his life near Angoor Adda
on 5th June 2009

Burial: Unknown

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

One year on..



Major Abid Majeed Malik
embraced shahadat (martydom) near Nazarabad village of the Swat valley
on 18th May 2009

Burial:
Cavalry Ground graveyard, Lahore

Find a grave



Remembering our shaheed .. 10


I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

Sunday April 18th 2010

'At least 13 militants and one soldier were killed during the on-going military operation in the Orakzai agency on Sunday' (Dawn)

Friday April 23rd 2010

'Reports of fierce clashes were received from the Orakzai tribal region on Thursday and security forces claimed killing 20 militants and injuring 23 others. One soldier also lost his life. ' (Dawn)

Thursday May 6th 2010

'One soldier was killed when militants attacked a security forces patrol party in the Rownyal area of Matta here on Wednesday.

Security forces were on a routine patrol in Rownyal when armed militants attacked their vehicle, killing hawaldar Gul Mohammad. The body was sent to his hometown Rustam in Mardan.' (Dawn)

Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Update June 15th 2010:
The date of the death of Gul Mohammad was not May 6th, it was May 5th. Apologies

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Respect for the dead

“Who cares about the dead in a society where human life itself has no value. Buried with profound grief, the deceased are forgotten in no time. Later on, only a few manage to take out time to visit the last resting place of their loved ones, which is one of the reasons that many graveyards, declared closed years ago, do not disappoint those looking for burial space. With government and society taking no responsibility of the dead, the mafia of undertakers exploit people and make money out of the misery of the common man who is duped even after death as he finds himself sharing his eternal abode with an uninvited guest.”

This is an excerpt from a very disheartening news article which you can read further here. It highlights the problem of vandalism and the desecration of graves within Pakistani cemeteries.

This article was published in 2005, what would have changed in 5 yrs? If you live in Pakistan, then why not take a trip to your local cemetery and see how well it is being maintained? If it's in disrepair petition the government to do something about it, or organise a few members of the community to clean up the cemetery, make people aware of the issues that surround graveyards and do your bit.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Happy Mothers Day - Pakistan style

Pakistan celebrates Mothers Day on 10th May each year and so I'd like to dedicate this delicious plate of kheer to my Mom:


It's one of my fav dishes she makes :) Yes, my mom is amazing..

Photo: Google Images

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

How many Pakistanis live in the UK?

If you wanted to know how many Pakistanis live in the UK, what would you do? Go around counting all the Pakistanis you could see? Well, now there's no need as I've found some interesting facts on telegraph.co.uk:

  • There are more than one million people in the UK of Pakistani ancestry.
  • It is the second largest overseas Pakistani population after Saudi Arabia
  • The West Midlands is home to 172,000 people of Pakistani ancestry, more than any other British region.
  • There are an estimated 163,000 in London, 163,000 in the Yorkshire area and 133,000 in the North West of England.
  • At least 3.7 per cent of children born in England and Wales in 2005 had two Pakistani parents.
  • It is estimated that by 2031 there will be at least 2.63 million people of Pakistani ancestry in the UK.
  • The most diverse Pakistani population is in London and is made up of Punjabis, Pathans, Urdu Speakers, Mirpuris and Sindhis.
  • The largest presence in the capital is in the East London areas of Ilford, Walthamstow, Leyton, Barking and Newham.
  • A significant number of Pakistanis have set up their own businesses, often employing family members.
  • Well-known British Pakistanis include Anwar Pervez, whose Bestway group has a turnover of £2 billion.
  • Birmingham has one of the largest Pakistani ex-patriate communities in the world.
  • There are at least 110,000 Pakistanis there, amounting to 11 per cent of the city's population.
  • Bradford is home to an estimated 77,000 Pakistanis making up 15.6 per cent of the city's population.
  • More than 90 per cent of Pakistanis in the UK are Muslims, mainly Sunni.

Reading these facts made me smile. It seems there are quite a lot of us!

Hmm, now to get those millions of Pakistanis to become family historians and trace their roots...

Friday, April 30, 2010

Private Family Graveyard

Some of my ancestors are buried in a private family graveyard in Pakistan. The graveyard is on privately owned land which belongs to our family. Unfortunately, I have not visited this place even though I have been to Pakistan many times. I know that my maternal grandma often visits the graveyard and is often the one who takes along visiting relatives to pay respects to the departed souls as she is one of the very few people who knows who is buried in which place. However, as she is getting older she is beginning to forget and therefore there is a need for grave markers or gravestones which identify the person that is buried there. So its been decided that indicators should be put down for the graves and money has been set aside for this purpose and hopefully my uncles in Pakistan will make sure the work is done.

But how many other Pakistanis are taking care of their private graveyards? Who should be in charge of the upkeep? Or should relatives co-operate and fund the maintenance of the graveyards so the responsibility is shared?

Here is a picture of the Bhutto family mausoleum:



It is situated in a village called Garhi Khuda Baksh in Sindh.

Topic questions:
Do you have a private family cemetery in Pakistan? Who takes care of it? Is there a sign at the entrance? Are the graves marked or unmarked? Is there a record of who is buried there?

If you have something to say on the topic, please do comment.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

100th Member for My Pakistani Ancestry


Just a celebratory blog post to announce that 'My Pakistani Ancestry' (my Facebook group) has just reached a milestone - that is, it's welcomed it's 100th member. Yes, this is just to promote the group further but what the heck!

Reasons to join the group:
  • You can find genealogical information, news and chat
  • Share research problems and techniques
  • Interact with other family historians by using the discussion boards
Thanks to everyone that has joined and let's hope there are more to come. It's easy to join. Click on the link here which takes you to the group's page. If you're logged on to your Facebook account you will be able to see the page otherwise log in. Near the top of the page you will be able to see the title of the group: 'My Pakistani Ancestry'. Click on the 'join' button next to it and you're done!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 9


I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom.

Sunday April 4th 2010

'At least 30 militants and six soldiers were killed in fierce clashes in different parts of Orakzai Agency on Saturday.' (Dawn)

Saturday April 10th 2010

'Three soldiers and 10 militants were killed in clashes in the South Waziristan tribal region on Saturday.' (Dawn)

Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying in a war? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Happy Birthday anyone?

My Pakistani Ancestry blog is officially 1 yrs old as of yesterday. Yay!

I started this blog in the hope it would attract other Pakistanis to the world of genealogy and as such I have tried to produce content that tailors to the Pakistani and that links with family history. I posted about the census, social networking, Mughals and then I became slightly serious with memorial posts for Pakistani soldiers who had lost their lives. I'm still figuring out what to do with the Urdu posts as I feel they are not very effective but I'm open to suggestions.

I am still in search for another Pakistani genealogy blogger (or geneablogger), let's hope this year I find not only him/her but more avid readers who like to comment. (hint hint!)

Lastly, thanks for reading :)

Census this year?

I've been following news of when the Pakistan Census would take place and have written about it in previous posts. See 'Census and Yr2051' and 'Pakistan National Census'.

It had been planned to be taken in 2009 and then postponed to the end of 2009.. which seems to be a list of delays.

Now, The Dawn reports that the census will (hopefully) be taking place in April 2010:

"Chairing the meeting of first task force on census, Mr Khizar Hayat Khan said that in the first phase house listing operation would be held in April 2010, whereas in the second phase population census would be carried in October 2010."

Across the border, news of a census taking place in India have also been reported:

"India began a yearlong census of its billion-plus population Thursday in which it plans to photograph and fingerprints every citizen over the age of 15 to create a national database and then issue its first national identity cards."
And if you're wondering when the UK will hold its census, you have one more year to wait..

Friday, April 2, 2010

The tome of Ghazi Khan Mirani

S.A.J Shirazi points out more historical landmarks that are being neglected by the Pakistan government. This time it's the tome of Ghazi Khan Mirani. He goes on to mention the awful condition of the tomb in Dera Ghazi Khan, a city in Pakistan. It 'lacks sensitivity to its heritage.'

On the positive side, there are people out there who care. Hashim Sher Khan, a social activist, has been writing to agencies to protect the historical sites.

Read more about DG Khan, here.

What more can be done to protect historical sites?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Happy Pakistan Day

Why is the 23rd March a public holiday in Pakistan?

It commemorates the passing of the Lahore Resolution, when a separate nation for the Muslims of the British Indian Empire was demanded.

The resolution was passed on the 23rd March 1940.

Read about it more by clicking on the link.



Minar-e-Pakistan, Lahore
was built in commemoration of the Lahore Resolution.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 8


I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom. See my previous posts here, here
, here, here, here, here and here.

Friday March 12th 2010

'Three persons including a soldier were killed in clashes between the Mamond Lashkar-backed security forces and militants in various areas of the troubled Bajaur Agency, official and tribal sources said on Thursday.' (The News)

Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Urdu word of the week - Post 8



امانت رکھنا
v.
to deposit; to commit to the care of; to entrust
'amanat rakhna'
میں نے تمہاری امانت رکھ دی ہے
transliteration
'main ne tumhari amanat rakh di hai'
i have kept your deposit



Please feel free to provide any feedback for this theme. You can even introduce your own Urdu words or even make up sentences with the above word and blog about them on your own blog. Remember to post your links.
Remember it's a Wednesday theme!

Or email me if you're shy: pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Fearless Females - Jennifer Musa (1917-2008)


Have you been following the blogging prompts from Lisa Alzo's blog which celebrate Women's History Month by asking bloggers to write about their female ancestors?

Today's blogging prompt is:
'March 13 — Moment of Strength: share a story where a female ancestor showed courage or strength in a difficult situation.'

I'm sharing the story of a female who is not an ancestor but deserves to have her story told as she was a strong woman living in a man's world.

Jennifer Musa was unknown to me until I read a post at pakistaniat.com written by Adil Najam. It's an interesting read which I encourage you to read here fully. Here's a glimpse of it:


Jennifer Musa, who has died aged 90, was an Irishwoman of modest stock who took over from her husband as head of a tribe in the remote borderlands of Baluchistan; unveiled and uncompromising, she dedicated her life to the conservative Muslim tribesmen among whom she lived for 60 years until her death….

Far from being a colonial figure who “stayed on”, and despite having been dubbed “the Queen of Baluchistan”, Jennifer Musa was a tough-minded, unassuming nurse who arrived at the parched fringes of the Indian subcontinent a year after Partition. When she arrived there, as she later recalled, locals believed that the British monarchy had gifted the “London lady” to their chief in return for killing a tiger.

She was born Bridget Wren at Tarmons, Co Kerry, Ireland, on November 11 1917, the daughter of smallholding farmers. She had four sisters and two brothers and received a Roman Catholic education. Known as Bridie, she later changed her name to Jennifer and left for England to train as a nurse. In 1939 she met Qazi Mohammed Musa in Oxford, at Exeter College’s May Ball.

Qazi Musa, who read Philosophy, was a ward of the Governor-General of Baluchistan and the eldest son of the prime minister to the Khan of Kalat, Baluchistan’s princely state. Jennifer took the Muslim name of Jehan Zeba and they married in 1940, despite some opposition from his otherwise “liberal” family.

Qazi had been married off to his first wife when he was 14 years old amid fears that he would be killed, most likely poisoned, by clan rivals. The marriage produced four sons and one daughter. Jennifer and Qazi’s first wife, a member of the neighbouring Kansi tribe, remained neighbours and friends in later years.

Qazi’s father had been a key figure in the Pakistan movement and the couple arrived there from England in 1948. The family stronghold at Pishin, a dusty, baked plateau 30 miles north of Baluchistan’s capital, Quetta, is a far cry from the banks of the Shannon. For centuries it fell under the suzerainty of tribes from the neighbouring city of Kandahar, where the Qazis once wielded influence before being expelled by the British. The area, which is hemmed in by russet mountains and tormented by dust devils and temperatures in excess of 50 degrees Celsius, was retained within the borders of British India after the Second Afghan War in 1881.
Jennifer donned the shalwar kameez, but without wearing a headscarf or the all-encompassing burqa, and lived the rarified life of the frontier sardars (tribal chiefs).

In a land of camels, her family owned the only car; despite the austere surroundings, they lived in relative security within the thick, mud-walled, colonial-era home that was festooned with daggers, tigers’ heads and photographs of her extravagantly whiskered in-laws.

Pakistan’s founder, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, stayed for several nights at the house, from where they often forayed across the border to the fashionable, Francophone court of the Afghan king at Kabul. But the idyll ended when her husband died in a motor accident in 1956. Despite her wish to return to Ireland, her husband’s family persuaded her to stay in Pishin with their 14-year-old son, Ashraf Jehangir Qazi [later to become Pakistan's Ambassador to USA].

Her independence of mind, often attributed to her “Irishness”, led her to enter politics. She joined the now-defunct National Awami (Freedom) Party (NAP) of the Pathan nationalist Wali Khan. At what are often called Pakistan’s “first and last free and fair elections”, in 1970, she won a seat in the national assembly. Her flaxen hair, grey-blue eyes and fair skin caused unease among its more bearded members.

Jennifer served as a parliamentarian for seven years, during which time she demonstrated her empathy for the underdog. She founded the area’s first women’s association and its first family planning clinic. “You can’t liberate women until you liberate men,” she said. More famously, she resisted strong pressure from the overbearing prime minister, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, to water down autonomous rights for Baluchistan.

Perhaps apocryphally, Bhutto was reputed to have mused whether she thought she was “the Queen of Baluchistan”. Then he added: “Fix that woman.”

She was a proud signatory of Pakistan’s 1973 constitution. But when Bhutto savagely crushed a Baluch insurgency during the 1970s Jennifer acted as a conduit for messages from the rebel leadership and jailed fighters to their families, because their women were cut off from public life as they were in purdah.

Democratic politics in Pakistan, and Jennifer’s political career, came to an end with the imposition of martial law at the end of the 1970s, and she turned her focus on her family home and lands. She grafted a rose garden among its pomegranate and pine trees. During the 1980s she worked among Afghan refugees who flocked to Pishin due to the fighting in the anti-Soviet jihad; she set up and managed an ice factory in a land that lacks refrigeration and electricity; and - to the chagrin of the mullahs - she promoted literacy for women.

But it was in her capacity as a traditional tribal administrator that she made her mark. She dispensed favours, settled disputes and signed chits for tribesmen who gathered at her gate. “You have to be astute dealing with the Baluch,” she remarked.

Her emphasis was on education, health and hard work. A local superintendent of police recalled how, when he was a schoolboy, Jennifer pinched his ear for missing class. In such a way she inspired a generation of local professionals who lived in fear of being “whacked”.

It remained a mystery to her family how she managed. She had little grasp of the local language, Pashto. A family retainer was amused to overhear the somewhat whimsical explanation for the town’s name of Pishin that she offered to a visitor - she said, erroneously, that it was derived from the Pashto for “cat”. When angry, her smatterings of Urdu and Pashto gave way to pure English.

Purposefully vague about when she “became Islamic”, Jennifer did not feel bound by religion, preferring to remark on the similarities of the various faiths.

She retained a faint Kerry brogue, but said she knew more about Pakistan than Ireland, which she last visited in the 1960s. She was an unfussy Irishwoman with a twinkly sense of humour who felt “very much at home” at Pishin. In Ireland, she noted, the women did not mix much with the men.

In her later years visiting foreign journalists mused about how the wild, tribal frontier, where women are in purdah and even goatherds carry Kalashnikovs, was an unlikely place to find an elderly Irish widow serving afternoon tea. The area has lately become a stronghold for the Taliban, and is generally out of bounds to foreigners.

Jennifer died on January 12. Her funeral procession was attended by thousands of burly, turbaned Pathans (many of them allied to the Taliban) who raised cheers of “Mummy Jennifer!” in her honour as the cortège passed through a shuttered Pishin. She was buried at the Qazis’ ancestral burial ground near the tomb of the family Sufi saint, Sheikh Farid Baba. President Pervez Musharraf telephoned Jennifer’s son, a former Pakistani ambassador to the United States, to offer his condolences for morethe death of a woman who, in one of her last interviews, said: “Mummy has had her innings.”


Unfortunately, the link to the obituary that was referred to in the blog post, is not working. What an interesting life she led!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Urdu word of the week - Post 7


ٹپکانا
n.
to distil, to cause; to drip
'tapkana'

وہان سے پانی ٹپک رہا ہے
transliteration
'wahan se pani tapak raha hai'
water is dripping from there


Please feel free to provide any feedback for this theme. You can even introduce your own Urdu words or even make up sentences with the above word and blog about them on your own blog. Remember to post your links.
Remember it's a Wednesday theme!

Or email me if you're shy: pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk

Myfamily.com are leaving us!


Yesterday I received an email from myfamily.com telling me that their free groups service will be ending soon. As I have a Basic (free) group on myfamily.com , I was really disappointed. I had come to love and really appreciate my site which I had put a lot of effort into. Not mentioning the other family members that had joined in order to share pictures, events of their lives and basically bringing us together via the internet. We would often laugh and joke about what each other had uploaded to the site. It was our thing and the grown ups didn't know about it. (Yes, I still include myself in the kids category!) I was even about to invite more relatives from Pakistan but alas, I won't be doing that.
Here is what the email said:


Important service changes to myfamily.com Effective July 1, 2010 We will be discontinuing support for Basic (free) groups as of July 1, 2010. In order for you and your members to have uninterrupted access to your group(s) after July 1, you or anyone in your group will need to upgrade it to an Essentials subscription plan. After July 1, if your group is not upgraded, it will not be deleted and you can still upgrade at any time. However, if you decide you are not going to upgrade, please download or copy any content you wish to retain before that date. $20 off your first year Essentials upgrade – offer starts today! We understand change like this isn't easy, so as a special offer to all our current members, like you, we are offering a first-year subscription rate of $9.95 per group. That’s a discount of $20 or over 65% off the regular price of $29.95. The Essentials plan gives you the same great features you know and love plus:
  • No ads on your group
  • Each member can upload 1GB per month (10x more than your Basic group)
  • Complete theme library
  • Customize your group features and theme
  • Personalized URL
Click here to upgrade your family group(s) now to the Essentials subscription for only $9.95 for the first year. Thank you, and we hope that you continue to stay connected with family and friends on myfamily.com - The myfamily.com Team


To be fair, they're not leaving us - they're just asking for money. How much? $9.95 per group for the first year, then they hike it up to $29.95. If you don't know what I'm talking about then check out the myfamily.com website. I wanna know where I can complain about it or sign a petition. So if anyone knows, please do tell. So what's next? Well, I'm hoping that they will allow previous free groups to continue unless they are inactive for 6 months, which seems fair. Otherwise I shall have to look elsewhere..

So who has a family group at myfamily.com? Anyone bothered about paying up?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Urdu word of the week - Post 6



جہاذ
n. m
ship
'jahaz'



Please feel free to provide any feedback for this theme. You can even introduce your own Urdu words or even make up sentences with the above word and blog about them on your own blog. Remember to post your links.
Remember it's a Wednesday theme!

Or email me if you're shy: pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk

Friday, February 26, 2010

The Prophet's Birthday: 12th Rabi ul Awwal


Today it's the Prophet's birthday: 26th February 2010/12th Rabi ul Awwal


Yaa Nabi Salaam 'alaika
Yaa Rasul Salaam 'alaika
Yaa Habib Salaam 'alaika
Salawaatu'llah 'alaika

Salutations on you, O Prophet
Salutations on you, O Messenger of Allah
Salutations on you, O Beloved
Blessings of Allah be upon you

Check out pictures of the celebration, here.

How do you celebrate the Prophet's birthday? Will the grown ups in the family tell stories of the Prophet (SAW) to children? Reciting salutations and songs in praise of the Prophet? Will you donate to charity? Will you prepare feasts or go to a gathering at the mosque?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Urdu word of the week - Post 5


Here is this week's Urdu word:


بود
n.f
existence; being
bud


I've not come across this word myself and I probably need a Urdu expert, or atleast someone with a bit more grasp of the lingo, to help me out with creating a sentence. Someone reading this should know one! Help me!
Please feel free to provide any feedback for this theme. You can even introduce your own Urdu words or even make up sentences with the above word and blog about them on your own blog. Remember to post your links.
Remember it's a Wednesday theme!

Or email me if you're shy: pakistani_g[at]hotmail.co.uk

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Remembering our shaheed .. 7


I'm posting more announcements of our shaheed (martyred) who are fighting for our country, our people and our freedom. See my previous posts here, here
, here, here, here and here.

Tuesday February 9th 2010

'Twelve soldiers embraced martyrdom while two others were injured in a clash with militants during the ongoing operation Rah-e-Nijat in South Waziristan Agency (SWA), the ISPR said on Monday.' (The News)

Wednesday February 10th 2010

'A Pakistan Army brigadier was killed and two other officers were injured when their vehicle was ambushed by militants in Tirah valley on Wednesday.' (Dawn)

Note: I can only provide you with names if I find them in the news articles I browse. If you think something needs correcting, please do leave me a message. I try my best.

We should all pray for these men and their families and recognise their courage and sacrifice for their country.

Are you related to a soldier? Do you have memories of a loved one dying? Do you have a message for the soldiers fighting? Leave me a comment.

Urdu word of the week - Post 4


Due to technical problems, I was unable to post yesterday's Urdu word of the week. Apologies for that. So let's continue with this week's Urdu word:


بگاڑنا
v.
to mar; to damage, to spoil
تم اِسے کیوں بگاڑ رہے ہو
transliteration:
'tum isse kyun begar rahe ho?'
why are you spoiling this?


Please feel free to provide any feedback for this theme. You can even introduce your own Urdu words or even make up sentences with the above word and blog about them on your own blog. Remember to post your links.
Remember it's a Wednesday theme!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day




Happy Valentine's Day to readers of the blog.
I hope everyone receives something special
from their loved ones..

Here is a favourite love song of mine -
'Tere Bina' from the film Guru (2007)


Friday, February 12, 2010

Girls are like apples


With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I was looking around for some humour and here it is:




It made me smile..